Sustainable Economic Development

Sustainable Economic Development and Employment

The overarching objective of measures in the priority area Sustainable Economic Development and Employment is to create sustainable and productive employment and income opportunities for the Afghan population people, while using and preserving the country’s natural resources sustainably. To achieve this, and thus improve living conditions on the ground on a long-term basis, the German government promotes access to training and capacity development opportunities, expands essential infrastructure and supports key value chains.

Because the Afghan agricultural sector provides jobs for the majority of the population, but has only achieved low levels of production and little value-enhancing processing to date, the German government provides targeted support for this sector. By improving irrigation infrastructure, providing production inputs and promoting product marketing, for example, it supports selected agricultural value chains with potential for import substitution – such as wheat, poultry and nut production – with the aim of reducing dependency on foreign products.

In implementing these measures, the German government places particular emphasis on conserving Afghanistan’s natural resources, which have not been managed sustainably following decades of violent conflict. Today, for example, only around two per cent of the country is forested, leading to soil erosion and degradation and endangering the population’s livelihoods. Together with local communities, efforts are therefore being made to protect the country’s remaining natural resources and develop measures to restore forest landscapes.

To create sustainable and productive employment and income opportunities, the German government also supports small and medium-sized enterprises through microfinance products and credit guarantees. At the same time, it supports efforts to increase the quality and labour market orientation of vocational training through capacity development and infrastructure measures, thereby improving income opportunities for trainees.

Further information on our activities in the priority area of Sustainable Economic Development and Employment can be found in the project descriptions and in the ‘Stories’ section.

Our work in this sector

Sustainable Economic Development and Employment Promotion Economic growth in Afghanistan has been stagnating for years. The difficult security situation in the country and the political uncertainty are having a negative impact on the investment climate and the job market. The many returnees and internally displaced persons further exacerbate the already strained labour market. more
Kunduz-Khulm National Highway – Infrastructure Triggers Economic Revival The road network in northern Afghanistan is not adequately developed. The roads are in a poor state of repair. Some have been destroyed by fighting, but most were already unsurfaced dirt or gravel tracks even before. In many areas there is no direct connection between towns, while other rural areas have practically no road links. more
Better Vocational Education and Training for All Young people in Afghanistan are struggling to find regular work. Of the around 3.2 million young people eligible to attend vocational school, only slightly more than two per cent graduate from a school-based vocational training programme. Many families cannot afford to send their children to a vocational school, even if the training is free. Twenty per cent of young people undergo traditional in-company training in small enterprises. more

Our stories